Thursday, December 31, 2009

A Very Merry Christmas

Yes, yes...I am a week late with this Christmas recap, but seriously. Show of hands of people who weren't busy as all heck in the past week? Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?

Anyway, Christmas Eve started for Isaac by reading "The Night Before Christmas" recorded book that Ben and I made for him. He turned the pages and listened to our voices. I think he was a little confused by hearing our voices with us sitting right there with him, not talking. He was all decked out in his Christmas jammies. He went to bed, normal time, normal 5 minutes (yes, we are down to 5, count em, 5!) minutes of fussing. And then Santa elves went to work.

The plan was not to buy him too much this year. And then I discovered peek a blocks on E.bay. In all fairness, I stayed within our set budget for him.

There were even presents in "Santa paper." You can't really see them in this picture, because they are buried beneath all the other toys. Oh, the jumperoo is old. We've had that. It just got in the way of all the toys.
Exhausted and lysoled out, we called it a night. (PS. mental note to stock pile every single size battery for the rest of Isaac's life...or at least until he is old enough to understand patience.)
And then...there was a poo explosion. An explosion that drenched the cleverly selected Christmas sleeper. Sigh. A change was necessary.
I had prepared a bottle for Isaac to tide him over, so his initial waking thought would not be "food" and we could focus on the masses of toys under the tree before eating breakfast. I had not prepared for the poo explosion. Ah, well. He had his pj change, and his bottle.

And then it was time for presents! :)

I think he was a wee bit overwhelmed. But he got the hang of it. He played, and played, and played. He finally crashed and slept like a rock for a good 2 hours.

He webcammed it up for his grandparents. He even looked the part. :)

He ate his Christmas feast of ham and sweet potatoes, and mooched off Mommy's plate for some mashed potatoes and cookies.

The day was everything I could have wanted for a first Christmas. We were low-key and together as a family. We got to enjoy our baby and our time.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009


Time has flown by so fast and with the passing, it took Isaac's eleven month milestone marker, the day after Christmas.

My little boy is zooming all over the house, and is never happy in the playpen anymore. He started standing up and walking along the furniture, but he is still a little tentative in doing so. We have baby proofed galore in our house. He chases the cats and has learned to "pet them nice."

Isaac's vocabulary has built way up over the past month. He says "uh oh" and "eat" in proper context. He says Iiiiiiiiiiiii dit, for his name. I also hear "dat," "wuv" and "yay!" If you asks him what the monkey says and go "oooohhh oh ah ah" he will repeat it back. :) When he catches the ball or does something we like and we say yay! he will throw his arms in the air and say it back.

I love his smile. He smiles and laughs all the time. If you say no to him he will shake his head.

And thank you, thank you, thank you, lord HE IS GOING TO SLEEP AT 8 EVERY NIGHT BY HIMSELF AND SLEEPING UNTIL A LEAST 7 EVERY MORNING. Sometimes I get really lucky and he'll sleep until 9. :) We are starting the cry it out for nap time now. I moved his big fluffly blue bunny into his crib and he loves to cuddle with it. And he is a mover in his sleep. If he falls asleep with me during the day, he wakes up as soon as he wants to move and is constricted by my body. He needs his space.
He loooooooves to feed himself. Chunks of sweet potato, carrots, and pancakes are his favorites. He is getting very good at the sippy cup (he may have learned sooner if I had realized there was a safety plug in them....) and we started on milk. He loves it. He has 4 oz a day and so far so good.

He loves to push buttons. And he loves to put his cookies throught he slot into his milk jug, which according to our Familes Fi.rst nurse, indicates his aptitude for math. We'll see. :) We also discovered "Word World" on PBS. Have you seen that show. I love it! It's genius! I would love to be an illustrator for that show.
I can't believe I am planning his first birthday celebrations already. It blows my mind.

Friday, December 25, 2009


I believe in hardwork and dedication.

I believe in perserverance.

I believe in laughing at yourself.

I believe in laughing so hard that it hurts, but not stopping.

I believe in smiling at strangers.

I believe in true love.

I believe that true love is what is left when the shine wears off.

I believe in positive thinking and the law of attraction.

I believe in karma.

I believe in miracles.

I believe in compassion and the good in people.

I believe in the magic of the holiday season.

Merry Christmas to you and yours! :)

Thursday, December 24, 2009

New Traditions

One of the hardest parts about living in California is being so far away from family for the holidays. Since we moved out here in 03, we haven't been home for Thanksgiving once. We were lucky enough to go home for Christmas for the first two years....then we both got promotions and the retail schedule is unforgiving. We went home the Christmas before I got pregnant. It was the first time we had been back east for the holidays in 2 years. Last year we didn't go because I was too pregnant, and I just squeezed my baby shower in Ohio in before the cutoff flying date.

We talked about going there for this Christmas, but nixed the idea early on. Traveling with a baby has proved difficult. We weren't so thrilled about the idea of traveling with him during the busiest time of the year. Plus it's cold. Cold and freezing, traveling with a baby during the busiest time of the year. Hmmm, thank you.

Anyway, Ben and I have our new traditions that we have started for our family. It was really important to us. The first Christmas we were out here alone was hard. And it forced us to make the holidays ours. We want to make this holiday special for Isaac, even though he won't really remember until he gets older.

Every year, I go see the Nutcracker ballet with my friend K. The SF ballet company is amazing, and the Opera House is absolutely stunning.

I bake Christmas cookies for friends. Last year was the first year that I didn't get to, again because of moving and baby showers. Usually I make alot. I think my record is um....21 kinds. in 2.5 days. This year, I did only 8 and that was enough. Isaac helped. He sat in his high chair or jumperoo and supervised.

We got Santa paper for Isaac's presents from Santa. I remember this from when I was a little girl. the presents from Santa were always in different paper, decorated with some image of Santa.

I started making Isaac a stocking. It isn't finished (umm, mom FAIL), but it is quite extensive. I haven't embroidered in YEARS and there are beads and sequins...oh my. Regardless, he still has a stocking and now I know for our next child to start en utero.

We have breakfast together. Usually cinnamon rolls, but tomorrow it's macademia nut pancakes and sausage.

We bought one of those recordable storybooks. Ben and I alternated reading pages. We gave it to Isaac tonight and he loved it. He was enthralled by our voices and turning the pages to make the recordings start. We will have him read it every Christmas with us.

We started Isaac's ornament collection last year. I made train ornaments for shower favors and he will have one of each color. This year I added a Handy Manny ornament. We will make him a first Christmas ornament tomorrow.

Some of these traditions are old, from our families. Some of them we came up with. Either way, we are excited to have these traditions for our new family. We are excited to celebrate our first Christmas as parents with our vibrant little boy.

Monday, December 21, 2009


I got spoiled.

For two weeks, I was with my baby almost all day, everyday. I haven't had that since maternity leave. It was absolutely WONDERFUL. We played, we took naps, we tried new foods, we did Christmas type things....

And then I went back to work and things got busy. Work is jammed packed everyday up to Christmas Eve. Oh yeah, and it's Christmas, so that automatically means everyone is on edge and stressed out and feel the need to pack ten million things to do into 24 hour days, myself included. Every year, I try to space things out and plan, plan, plan so I don't feel the stress and anxiety shoot up, but only the happy hustle and bustle. It just never seems to work. Last week was not so fun. I had something that needed to get done almost every single night during the week...a haircut, the ballet, a trip to Wal.mart...and I worked all 5 weekdays, last week.

I missed my baby. I just wanted to cuddle up on the couch with my boy and enjoy the holiday. But there just was not time. I know, I know. Make time, right? I do too much and blah, blah, blah.

I have to work. And I have to get presents sent off. And trust me, I majorly cut back on everything this year.

I missed Isaac so much, it ached. And sitting on the couch, listening to him cry it out in his crib just seemed unfair and wrong to both of us, and made me cry. I cheated a little bit, and cuddle him in his room for a few minutes.

He is still down to 10 minutes of crying so, it didn't hurt, right?

So thankfully, with the exception of a teeth cleaning that I have to get in before the end of the year for insurance purposes (don't eve get me started on the evils of dentists). I am able to enjoy this week with my baby. It's his first Christmas. I know he won't remember it, but I will.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Biting the Bullet sent me an email informing me that my child is 46 weeks old. 6 weeks shy of his first birthday. I really don't read these updates. I freak out if I think something is not going right. One of the things I loved about my OB was that he didn't give me unneccessary information. All I needed to know was that my baby was healthy. He didn't tell me the heart rate in an exact number, just that it sounded great. When I looked at my chart at the end, I saw how it fluctuated from week to week and I know me. I would have freaked and been concerned about something I didn't need to be concerned about. So I don't read these email things. Occassionally there will be a topic in a headline that will spark an interest, but generally I don't read them.

Anyway, 46 weeks old. I thought about where I wanted him to be, and how far he's come. In my opinion, he does alot of things that are somewhat advanced for his age, like putting his cookies through the slot in his cookie jar, and doesn't do other things as regularly or as well as another baby his age. I am not worried about him in terms of development or growth. He's perfect to me. He's healthy and he's happy.

But he wasn't sleeping well. His sleeping routine was not where I wanted it to be.

I realize that breastfeeding babies don't routinely sleep through the night until they are a bit older. But Isaac weaned himself. He's a bottle baby now. So that reason doesn't fly for me.

Plus I AM DAMN TIRED. Somehow I ended up with like, 4 jobs over the past year and no matter what I do, I have alot on my plate. I need sleep.

I thought about it long and hard. I looked at our routine and what needed to change. I talked to my husband, and then just bit the bullet.

Isaac eats dinners between 5:30 and 6, followed by his bath. Then he is allowed to play until about 7:30ish. At that time we turn down all the lights, have one last bottle and cuddle and rock for a while. Then at 8, heavy eyed or not so much (but he is 9.5 times out of 10), we go into his room, turn on his aquarium and kiss him goodnight. I put him in his crib and rub his back, tell him I love him and I will be right outside. Then I leave him and shut the door. I let him cry it out.

He screams. It started out as about 30-45 minutes of screaming, sometimes an hour. We are down to about 20 minutes. And then he sleeps. AND THEN HE SLEEPS THROUGH THE NIGHT.

So do I.

Do I like hearing my baby scream? Absolutely not. But it is not a pained cry. He's mad. I don't go in there anymore, because that makes him scream louder. I distract myself. I don't go near his room. I clean up the kitchen and pick up all his toys around the house. I took a couple of long showers and dried my hair. I do laundry in the basement. I run the dishwasher. I don't really hear him. By the time I am done with everything, he's sound asleep and I go in then to tuck him in.

It was the best decision for us. He knows I love him. And now, he is a delight in the morning. He wakes up happy and rested and so do I. If he wakes up during the night, I don't hear him. He greets me with smiles in the morning.

It was time. We all needed this.

Monday, December 14, 2009


Our family just took our first vacation in a long time that did not somehow involve a wedding, our parents, or Ohio. (Hmmmm, our layover was in Cin.cinnati, but that doesn't count right?) Not that those are bad things, but still. They aren't really vacations then.

We went to North Carolina to visit my husband's best friend and his wife and son. And we didn't do ANYTHING. We didn't plan anything, we didn't go on day trips. We layed around. We relaxed. We took the boys to see Santa. Ben and I went to see "A Christmas Carol" (PS, NOT a suitable movie for kids. Holy cow, some of those ghosts were SCARY!). Isaac enjoyed Otis, the dog and he learned to stand up. He liked having other people's stuff to play with. I liked not having a house to maintain or work to worry about. We rolled with the punches and it was wonderful. We played and watched TV.

It was exactly what we all needed, more so than we thought. We came back refreshed, me especially. We had the next day to get our Christmas tree and decorate. We felt like a family. :)

I came back to work feeling more motivated and ready to tackle things. I am more focused.

Seriously, we didn't do ANYTHING. I suggest you try it!

Isaac does well with the tree. I put a bunch of baby friendly ornaments around the bottom. He only plays with those. :) The cats....not so much. I just had to strap him down so I could a good picture. He doesn't hold still. AT ALL. And it looks like I need a haircut. :)

Friday, December 11, 2009

All I Want For Christmas for my baby to start sleeping through the night.

Seriously. That's all I want. I am considering driving myself to the mall just to tell that to Santa. Forget the KitchenAid mixer, and the Blu Ray player. I don't really need that purple Coach purse or those EasyTone shoes. What I need is SLEEP.

Isaac is close to getting a sleep pattern down, said while holding my breath. The last time I thought that, 4 pearly whites starting cutting through his gums at the same time.

Well, now those teeth have all broke through. Realizing his need for a baby toothbrush, I also realized his need for a better bedtime routine.

Oh, he knows when bedtime is. BELIEVE ME. He knows. He knows because he HOWLS. and wiggles. and squirms. and recently, BITES. I think that may have been because of the teeth, but still. He bit me. I will not be the mother to the biter.

Anyway, Isaac goes to bed around 8. During the prevacation, I hate my life because these teeth are killing me phase, he pushed it to about 9:30 or 10. That doesn't really work for me or Ben. We need those 2 hours. Now, if he was sleeping from 10 until 7, I would be fine. But he wasn't. He was still waking up at least once a night, if not 2 or 3 times. Then he insisted on being up at 5.

So, I am kinda done with the lack of sleeping routine. He's almost 11 months. He's weaning himself. He's ready. I'm ready.

So last night, I gave him his bottle. Then he nursed for a minute or two. And then just laid there, cooing in my arms while we rocked. At 8, I took him into his room, with his newly lowered crib (necessary because I have a standing man). I kissed him. Turned on the mobile, and put him down. Let the screaming begin. I told him he was fine, and I would be right outside but it was time for bed now. I rubbed his back and gave him one last hug, then left the room, closing the door behind me. I cleaned up the kitchen and did a few other things. By 8:30, the screaming had stopped. There were a few occassional whimpers, but then silence.

And then he slept until 7:15 this morning.

So I say with bated breath:

Dear Santa,
All I want for Christmas this year is for my baby to start sleeping through the night.

Oh, and Avent size 4 nipples. I can't throw those into the dishwasher and if I am not going to be able to sleep much at night, I can't waste any of that time washing nipples for Isaac's bottles.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Shop 4 Anissa

Today is Shop 4 Anissa day!

What is Shop 4 Anissa day, you ask?

A group of shop owners and vendors are donating a portion of their sales to the Mayhew family. Head on over to do your Christmas shopping! There are a ton of great stores.

My contribution is 100% of profit made from sales on my Mary Kay website.

Its a great cause, and you will be helping a wonderful family in a very difficult time. :)

If the links above won't work for you, just click on the Shop 4 Anissa button in my sidebar.

Happy Holiday Shopping!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Air Time

I am THAT mother.

I am the mother who drugs her child on the plane.

Let me explain.

We went on vacation last week to North Carolina. Our layover was in Cincinnati. This is a 4hr + flight on the way east, and over 5hr + on the way back.

The first flight, which left SFO around noon was a NIGHTMARE. Isaac slept for about 20 minutes. My husband forgot his headphones, so he couldn't watch his DVDs. Yes, I put headphones on my child and let him watch Baby Einstein or Handy Manny on a small DVD player for the flight. It worked well in the past. (And yes, this is Isaac's third trip that involves flights. He's a seasoned little traveler).

Wrangling a 10 month old child who loves to jump and crawl in a tight space is not fun.

God bless the flight agents who had the foresight to give us an entire row to oursleves. Putting Isaac in the seat inbetween Ben and I gave him much amusement and our arms and legs a much needed break. Traveling tip for mothers with infants: When you check in, specify you will have an "infant in lap." The agent saw this and switched our seats to an empty row. If I could, I would give that woman a hug and a million dollars. BLESS YOU.

Despite the extra room, Isaac was not happy. He wanted to crawl around. And he is not the teeny infant he was on our first plane trip, nor was he crawling on our second. THE 4 HOURS ABOUT KILLED ME. I almost left the plane bald, from Isaac tearing at my scalp and me excusing my self to the lavatory to scream silently and yank out my hair.

Now, I was never one of those people who scoffed and glared and huffed at mothers with their crying and screaming children on planes. I get it. Babies CRY. And they have like a 20 second attention span. Several, "knowledgable" mothers said "ooohhh, I wish I could help you." One woman even said "I am glad that is not my child." Thank you. Thank you all.

The flight time was not during one of Isaac's nap times, especially after he just napped for the hour or so we were in the car to drive to the airport. We did the best we could. And he slept for the second leg of our flight out, but maybe because it was on a tiny plane that flew lower aka MORE BUMPY and more white noise. Or maybe he was just tired from all screaming.

Did I mention he was sniffy and drippy nosed and cutting 4 teeth? Oops.

Even though we had a whole row to ourselves for the long flight back home, I wasn't taking any chances. Our flight left at 6 am, which is 3 am in California. Isaac's schedule was all out of whack due to the time difference. We normally try to keep him on PST, but lately he decided bedtime was at 10pm, not between 7 and 8. Sorry, I cannot stay up until after 1am with him. And Ben and I were both sick and had been up since 2:30am.

So I drugged him. I gave him a teeny tiny miniscule amount of children's benedryl. It was like 1/8 of the dosage. And relax, I checked with a Dr before I doped him up.

Worked wonders. He slept for 3 of the 5 hours LIKE A ROCK in his middle seat all snuggly in his blankie. I watched Harry Potter. My husband slept. He woke up and ate lunch, then watched some Baby Einstein, then played with his toys. He only fussed for the last 30 minutes. And really, people should be waking up from their flight naps by then, right?

Yes, I am THAT mother that drugs her baby on the plane. And I am not sorry for the simple fact that I returned with all my hair.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Hammer Time

Isaac loves him some toy hammer! He figured out how to use it, and now he hits things all the time...the floor, other toys, the cats, my legs....
It really doesn't bode well for the toy bat that he will open at Christmas! :)

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Feed Myself!

Isaac likes to feed himself now. On Thanksgiving, we gave him his first "big boy meal" which consists of all the food we were eating, with the exception of the sweet potatoes. He got plain ones, without marshmallows. I don't need him to have the extra sugar. :)

Isaac's first taste of turkey.
Hey, what's this in my mouth, Mom?

Isaac's first Thanksgiving feast.

And he ate it all!
Now he only likes to feed himself. It gets messy. The only thing he will let me feed him is yogurt and some occassional cereal.
I have to be creative with his leftover purees. I roll the meats into little balls with mashed potatoes. All his fruits and veggies I just cut into small bits now and then steam them to make them softer for his chewing pleasure.
Did I mention how messy? :)

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


Thanksgiving Day was also Isaac 10 month mark.

I think this past month was my favorite, simply because Isaac learned to say "Mama."

And he crawls up to me know and gets up on his knees, stretches up his arms, and makes the "uh! uh!" noise, asking to be picked up.

My next favorite thing that developed this month was that he crawls into my lap and snuggles with me.

He has come really far this past month, especially in terms of mobility. He zooms aroudn in his walker, and he is working on pulling himself to standing. He is also able to sit up from a laying down position without rolling onto his side or tummy, like a sit up.

We discovered last week that he no longer likes to be fed. He only wants to feed himself. It has been kinda fun, because now he is eating more of what we are, and it makes my life easier. He loooooooves cheese. He finally figured out the sippy cup as well. :)

Still not sleeping through the night. :( sigh. And he's pushing bed time later and later, and nap times less and less. I guess that is probably good because our nap in the swing days are numbered as he packs on the pounds!

6 teeth!

He loves Handy Manny. He laughs when the songs come on and will turn his head to see it when he hears it come on. And no joke, he's a big Clark.son fan. He sings along with the radio. He watches Buck.eye football with his dad, and seems to enjoy it.

We have whole conversations now and I love it.

He figured out how to fool me by pretending he put something in his mouth, chewing and watching me dive across the floor and swipe into his mouth only to find nothing. He laughs and laughs.

Yep, my baby boy is growing up. But he will always be my little Peanut. :)